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Kumho promotes Ecsta ASX through ESPN Winter X Games

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Kumho Tire U.S.A. launched its new Ecsta ASX ultra-high performance all-season tire in front of a record audience at ESPN’s Winter X Games VIII, held January 23-27 in Aspen, Colo.

According to ESPN, the event drew a record crowd of 66,500 people, compared to 48,700 in 2003 and 36,300 in 2002.

In addition to the record on-site crowd, the Winter X Games were also broadcast live for the first time on ABC, ESPN and ESPN 2. In previous years, the games were shown on a tape-delay basis.

According to Nielsen Media Research, the broadcasts set an all-time record for the Winter X Games, exceeding 2003's household average by 30%. The live broadcast garnered the games an average of nearly 536,000 households.

Key demographic ratings also were up significantly from previous years, highlighted by major increases for people between the ages of 12 and 24 (more than 39% on ESPN and over 41% on ABC) and 18 to 34 (more than 48% on ESPN and over 62% on ABC).

In addition, traffic on EXPN.com was up 50% over last year and was up by 200% over 2002.

As an associate sponsor of Winter X Games VIII, Kumho's "perks" included on-site signage at all of the event venues, display space on-site in the vendor village, print ads in the event program and ESPN magazine, and commercials on the ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 broadcasts.

"The Winter X Games were fantastic for us because the Kumho brand was exposed to a whole new audience -- both in-person and on the TV broadcasts," said Mike Leverington, director of marketing for Kumho. "It was also a great way to launch our new Ecsta ASX because it offers extreme performance in all weather conditions—much like the Winter X athletes."

At the Kumho tent in the X Games vendor village, spectators picked up lanyards, signed up for daily drawings for a set of tires and checked out the new Ecsta ASX, a 26-inch Ecsta STX and other Kumho products. "We gave away 10,000 lanyards and over 3,000 people signed up for the daily drawings," said Leverington. "There was a lot of interest in the ASX, and the 26-inch STX was like a people magnet in front of our tent."

Leverington added that Kumho will sponsor X Games X in Los Angeles this August and hopes to expand its relationship with the ESPN franchise in the future.

Other sponsors at Winter X Games VIII included Jeep, Taco Bell, Mountain Dew, Right Guard, Reese's, PlayStation2, Navy, Columbia Sportswear and Warner Brothers' Starsky & Hutch.

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